It sounded like a campaign speech. Like Doug Pederson was campaigning to keep his job.
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Maybe Pederson has already received assurances from owner Jeff Lurie that he’s coming back in 2020. Or maybe he really was trying to convince Lurie to keep him.
Either way, Pederson spent several minutes of his Monday afternoon Zoom call with the media supplying reasons he should remain head coach of the Eagles in 2021.
“I know exactly how to get things fixed,” Pederson said “We've won a lot of games around here. Been in the post-season three out of the five years I've been here and a championship and all that. I've seen it, I've done it. That's where my confidence lies.”
The good? Pederson has taken the Eagles to the playoffs three of the last four years and led the franchise to its first championship in more than half a century just three years ago. The Eagles always play hard, no matter who’s on the field.
The bad? With each successive year, the Eagles have done worse - from a Super Bowl to a wild-card win to a wild-card loss to 4-10-1. He’s won 10 games once in five seasons. The Eagles have a losing record since the Super Bowl. Pederson made numerous questionable in-game decisions this year. The Eagles are 14-21-1 the last three years over the first three months of the season.
So you can make a case to keep Pederson just as easily as you can make a case to get rid of him.
It’ll be up to owner Jeff Lurie to decide which case is more compelling.
Pederson said he speaks with Lurie regularly but indicated that those conversations so far haven’t been about his future.
“Our main focus is on this season right now currently,” he said. “We still have one game to play.”
One game that has no bearing on the standings, since the Eagles were eliminated Sunday, when they lost 37-17 to the Cowboys to lock up their fifth 10-loss season in the last 30 years.
The Eagles finish against Washington Sunday night at the Linc.
Asked how things got so bad this year, Pederson quickly pointed to injuries, which certainly had a lot to do with the Eagles’ struggles.
But it's a lot more than that.
“I just know that we've got to get back to fundamentals, back to basics,” Pederson said. “Having a missed offseason, we’ve got to get back to that. We’ve got to get back to the teaching of the basics and the fundamentals and having OTAs and having practice and getting back to the things that we've had success with here in the past.
“Being smart that way and really leaning on our past just a little bit and those things that have helped us win games and win a championship. That all comes with the offseason moving forward.”
Pederson’s head coaching tenure is already tied with Buddy Ryan for 4th-longest in Eagles history, behind his mentor Andy Reid (14 years), Greasy Neale (nine years) and Dick Vermeil (seven years).
Will it continue for a sixth season?
Pederson was doing his best Monday to convince Lurie that he should.
“I know in my heart that this is a great place to play, a great place to coach,” he said. “We do have the best fans. When we win, it's unbelievable. It's exciting. I know we can get back to that level.I know what that looks like. I know what it takes.
“Me personally, I've been in three Super Bowls, been on three Super Bowl teams, and I've seen exactly how it can be done. We've got to get that back. We've got some great players, some great young players, and they're getting valuable experience right now playing.
“It's just unfortunate that we're not winning these games. … But know we can get it turned around and get it fixed.
“I know that we can get back to that, get back to the fundamentals, basics, get back to who we are, start our identity in the offseason, and that's where you build the foundation.”
Whether Pederson will be the one teaching those basics and building that foundation remains to be seen.
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